hey pretty

Ceci n'est pas une "dating blog."

Friday, June 01, 2007

Na-Mother-F'N-Naste

Still a bit emotionally spent from my weekend away, and my body hating me for subjecting it to three nights of dorm bed sleeping, I decided it was time to return to yoga class. Many of you will recall my love-hate relationship with the practice. When we're jiving, I love getting swept away in the flow of the poses, the pleasant sensation of deep breathing combined with stretching, and marveling at the things my body is capable of. When we're not jiving, I find yoga sweaty and tedious, and I begin to resent whatever hippy-dippy shirtless dude on the mat next to me who is leaning just a tad too far into my personal space.

Letting go is not something that I am good at. Sometimes yoga is great for helping me release whatever petty melodrama my head insists on replaying to itself a million times a day. Other times, yoga finds me trapped with nothing to think about *but* those issues. Add to that my chronic ankle problems, and the prospect of enjoying a class is spotty at best.

But yesterday it was time. If only so I could do something about the persistent pain that had been sitting in my lower neck all week. I arrived at the studio dressed in my ratty workout gear (I have never been one to gussy up just to sweat--unless of course, it's from that *other* activity--zing!) prepared to embrace whatever obstacles came my way. I was signed in by a lovely young woman, who displayed none of the superiority or snottiness I normally encounter from the studio assistants. Pleasant surprise, that was. I waited in the hall with the other yogis, also a pleasant seeming bunch.

When it was time, we entered the studio and placed our mats in our preferred locations. There was a lot of extra space due to low attendance, so I was confident I'd have much space to practice in. Wrong. A hippy-dippy dude (yet thankfully not shirtless) plopped his mat down next to mine despite the abundance of space elsewhere in the studio. I experienced a moment of annoyance before reasoning with myself.

"Self," I said. "You have your preferred place in the studio where you always put your mat. Chances are others do too. It's not this guy's fault that his preferred location is two inches from yours. You'll have to learn to peacefully coexist and deal." So shocked was I by the intervention of a non-snarky inner voice, all I could really do was shut up and do some warm up stretches. "Who is that woman," I thought, "and why is she so reasonable?"

Class commenced and it was good. Yes, my decrepit ankles took issue with the fact that they were sometimes required to turn at a 45 degree angle, something they just weren't down with, and my bony old knees were *not* happy about whatever pose that is where you lean on them from a lunge. But poses that I used to loath were suddenly much easier, due most likely to the awesome amounts time I've devoted to cardio over the past several months. Plus, the combination of stretching, breathing, and moving was just extremely cathartic and relaxing.

Class ended, and walking to the metro I took stock of the experience and how I felt.

Did my neck still hurt? No.
How did the rest of me feel? Energized, limber, strong.
Did my heart still feel all raw and beaten? Actually, no. No, it did not.

At the beginning of class the instructor told us to set our intentions for our practice, perhaps even to dedicate the practice to somebody in need of a little positive karma. My intension was to release myself from all the drama and indefiniteness that I feel has weighed me down for months, and to send nothing but good thoughts to those that the drama involved. Douchebags, many of 'em, but they need all the good karma they can get.

And this is how a huge weight was lifted from my shoulders last night, the one no doubt responsible for causing all my neck pain. Because that's what it's been--a giant pain in the neck.

Then I got to thinking about all those people who are all totally into yoga and how they walk around all the time talking about "intentions" and "toxicity" and all that other quasi-spiritual new-ageiness, and how I normally roll my eyes because they sound ridiculous. But they're supposedly all enlighted and stuff, whereas I am a cynic's cynic. Yes, I believe in many of those things but I normally keep them to myself. But now I'm wondering if it's possible to become a full-on yoga devotee and still retain a little of my oh-so-endearing sarcasm and wit. Can I be calm, balanced, stable and at peace with the world and still be funny? Or is doing yoga going to turn me into some sort of irritatingly upbeat, drum-beating freak? These are the questions that vex me today. When one worry subsides another replaces it. Albeit, not a particularly dark one. Somehow, I think I'll deal.


And in other news, I am wearing quite the hot little number today. (But in magenta).

Labels: , , , , , ,

2 Comments:

Blogger lorelai236 said...

Namaste, hot stuff ;)

6:12 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

kate,

you're way to fucking cool to get sucked into that garbage. Please tell me you don't patronize Tranquil Space.

I hate those fuckers on account of my ex-girfriend, who would buy the fucking clothing there.

Yoga dudes are the worst. And shirtless? Ugh.

3:51 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home